Bajaj Auto declares highest-ever turnover of Rs 50.7 billion

The two-wheeler giant also announced its highest-ever operating profit (EBITDA) of Rs 8.17 billion, up by 31 per cent over the previous financial year. The board of directors of the company has recommended a dividend of 140 per cent at Rs 14 per share. The dividend paid in the previous year was also Rs 14 per share (140 per cent).

Sales and other operating income at Rs 48.95 billion grew at 16 per cent compared with Rs 42.21 billion in FY 2001-02. The gross profit after interest but before depreciation and taxation for FY 2002-03 at Rs 9.59 billion was higher at 25 per cent as compared to Rs 7.67 billion in FY 2001-02.

The profit after tax for FY 2002-03 at Rs 5.38 billion was marginally higher compared to Rs 5.21 billion in FY 2001-02.

The total number of vehicles sold crossed 1, 445,773 in 2002-03 as compared to 1,358,980 in 2001-02. Over 0.5 million Boxers were sold during the year. The Pulsar, a runaway hit from the day it was launched, continued to dominate the premium segment of the motorcycle market, with over 1,80,000 sold in the current year.

In the crucial executive segment, the Caliber 115 (Hoodibabaa), launched recently in March 2003, sold over 25,000 numbers in the very first month of its launch. According to Rajiv Bajaj, joint managing director, Bajaj Auto, the really 'big' news is that the company has decided to reduce its dependence on discounts and other promotional schemes in response to similar marketing promotions launched by competitors and instead focus on noticeable improvements in technical features and price/performance ratios which would offer their customers dramatic increases in value for money.

"This has already been demonstrated by the success of the Pulsar and the Calibre which have both raised the benchmark for engine capacity versus horse power and mileage ratios. This benchmark will be further raised within the next few months with the launch of the 'world bike' jointly developed with the Kawasaki. A brand new engine is also ready for launch, which incorporates technology that will be used for the first time in the world," he said.